Before we really start to explore the inner workings of a chip company, I want to introduce you to the people behind the scenes.
We are a family business, one that’s been in the food industry for nearly 60 years. At this point, the family has many different businesses around the world, some small, some quite large. Our operation here in Houston is the youngest part of the family business. We’ve been making chips for a little over 2 years (mostly for other companies…it’s called “private label manufacturing”), and now we are taking our own brand to the market.
My name is Paul. I’m the Brand Manager for Simply 7 Snacks, which means I touch every aspect of bringing this product from concept to shelf. Most of what you read here will be written by me.
My boss, the President of the company, is Rashim. He’s part of “the family”. Simply 7 was his idea, and he still stays very involved in the product development process. Most decisions about the brand, from flavors to package design to advertising, are made jointly by Rashim and I.
The “big uncle down the hall” is named Kawal. He gives us a lot of feedback and guidance about what we are doing, and he specializes in pep talks. But mostly he forwards funny emails and cheers for the Houston Rockets. Or sulks about them, depending on the outcome of last night’s game.
Ajith, Pedro, and Lidio actually make the chips. Or, more accurately, they manage the team of people who push the button to turn on the machines that make the chips. More on that process later.
Julio and Jose make sure that the chips that the machines make live up to our expectations. They are our quality team. They ensure that we pass all our certification reviews and they test different aspects of production all the time to make sure things are on track.
Then there are a bunch of people who are behind-the-behind-the-scenes. Genesis answers the phone, ships out packages, handles orders, and generally keeps this place running smoothly. Ariana handles logistics, which means that she coordinates all the trucks bringing us stuff from suppliers and all the trucks taking our chips to our customers. Joe manages our other chip brand, Chispas (www.chispassnacks.com) and lives in Austin…lucky guy! Mike pretty much just scares people with his goatee, his giant black motorcycle, and his crazy stories from last weekend. And Salil, Hasan, and Sunil make sure everyone gets paid.